Events and things to do in Dorset - August 2014

Fireworks at Camp Bestival

Fireworks at Camp Bestival - Credit: Archant

A selection of August events from all across Dorset


Until 4 August - Out of the Blue

Artists Zee Jones and Pam Allsop express joyful creativity through image and colour. Courtyard Gallery, Town Mill, Lyme Regis

6 August - 14 September - Strange Scenes from the Borderlands

Dave Wicken’s unusual take on Dorset’s Jurassic Coast from a tyrannosaur devouring a church to a dragon enjoying a holiday in Charmouth. Rotunda Gallery, Lyme Regis Museum

Until 18 August - Summer Exhibition

Most Read

Gallery on the Square, Poundbury features some of the foremost British artists who work outdoors including Dorset painters Judy Tate, Colin Willey and David Brackston.

23 – 26 August - Exploring Hardown Hill

Morcombelake Art Group drew inspiration from the views of the sea and Golden Cap from this local hill for their annual exhibition at James Hargreaves Hall.

Until 30 August - Summer Exhibition

A stunning summer showcase of local and national artists features at Artwave West’s Morcombelake gallery.



28 July – 3 August - Milton Abbey International Music Festival

Music courses and concerts play out against the glorious backdrop of Milton Abbey at this festival. (

5- 9 August - Stomp

From dustbin lids to water bottles - percussion, dance and theatre all come together in this lively and original show. Bournemouth Pavilion Theatre 0844 576 3000

10 – 17 August - Burton Bradstock Festival of Music and Art

A glittering array of national and international musicians descends on this West Dorset village by the sea for this popular annual event. (

21 – 24 August - Purbeck Folk Festival

Family friendly folk music fun down on the Wilkswood Farm at Langton Matravers. This year’s line up includes Lloyd Cole, Eddi Reader, Boo Hewerdine and Turin Brakes (

22 August - The Wurzels

The West Country legends entertain with classic tunes such as I’m a Cider Drinker and Combine Harvester. Ohhh arrrr! Bournemouth Pavilion Theatre 0844 576 3000

29 -31 August - End of the Road Festival

An intimate music festival at Larmer Tree Gardens featuring music from Flaming Lips and Fleet Foxes and comedy from Jessica Delfino and Mark Watson. (

29 – 31 August - Lyme Folk Festival

A wonderful musical weekend featuring the cream of the crop from the UK and local folk scene (

30 August - British Sea Power

The indie-rock mavericks perform a live soundtrack to Penny Woolcock’s film about the history of Britain’s coastline from 1901 to the present.Electric Palace, Bridport 01308 424901



31 July & 1-3 August - The Tempest–Shaken & Stirred

Miracle Theatre’s fresh musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s timeless play performed outdoors. Starts 7.30pm ( 31 July: Springhead Gardens, Fontmell Magna (01747 811853) 1 August: Village Hall Field, Melbury Osmond (01935 83410) 2 August: Higher Orchard, Sandford Orcas (01963 220208) 3 August: Kimmeridge Bay, nr Wareham (01929 481323)

1, 4, 6 & 8 August - Henry IV

Brownsea Open Air Theatre performs Shakespeare’s thrilling history play on Brownsea Island. Booking essential 01202 251987

2 & 22-24 August - Stars Under the Stars

Open air cinema in Corfe Castle’s grounds with Purbeck Film Festival. See website for film listings.

7 August - Romeo & Juliet

Open Air Theatre at Kingston Lacy with the Lord Chamberlain’s Men. Bring seating and a picnic. Booking essential; 0844 249 1895

9 & 16 August - Open Air Theatre

Macbeth, The Adventures of Sherlock Homes, Robin Hood and George’s Marvellous Medicine all performed against the dramatic backdrop of Corfe Castle. More details Booking essential on 0844 249 1895

15 August - The Sooty Show

Izzy wizzy let’s get busy, Sooty, Sweep and Soo in more comedy capers with Richard Cadell at the Regent Centre, Christchurch 01202 499199

16 August - Stars at the Beach

Purbeck Film Festival screenings at the Discovery Centre with a fish and chip supper at Knoll Beach Café, Studland. Booking essential 01929 450500 More details and film listings

23 August - Monty Python Live: Encore

An encore screening of the historic Last Night of the Pythons Live from London’s O2 Arena. The Electric Palace, Bridport, 01308 424901


Best of the Rest

14 August - Wild Pirates Day

Come dressed as a pirate for a fun day of swashbuckling adventure on Stonebarrow Hill (DT6 6RA) with the National Trust runs 11am-4pm.

15 August - Crafts in the Garden

Watch demonstrations and buy crafts direct from the local makers in the gardens of the Red House Museum, Christchurch.

23 – 25 August - Tea Ceremony

Enjoy a traditional tea ceremony experience in the gardens at Kingston Lacy, then sample tea prepared by expert Cai Wan-Ling. Booking essential 01202 883402


More Festivals, Fairs & Carnivals

26 July – 3 August - Spirit of Portland Festival

Community based festival celebrating Portland’s heritage including walks, talks, water-based firework displays, open-water swimming and live music. (

28 July – 5 August - Bournemouth Carnival

Children’s events and live entertainment all week, ends with the Grand Procession on Sunday. (

31 July – 3 August - Camp Bestival

The award-winning family festival at the castle by the sea in Lulworth has a circus theme this year. (

2-3 August - The Great Dorset Chilli Festival

A chilli fiesta at Wimborne St Giles featuring all things chilli, from cooking demos and spicy street food to local ice creams and beers to slake your thirst. (

2 - 10 August - Lyme Regis Regatta & Carnival

Fun and games on and off the water in Lyme with over 60 events around town and firework and procession on 9 August. (

17 August - Buckham Fair

Martin and Philippa Clunes’ fundraising dog and pony show held on glorious Buckham Down overlooking Beaminster. Fun fair, horse and dog displays local food court and local crafts. (

20 August - Gillingham & Shaftesbury Show

Agricultural show at Motcombe Turnpike with livestock, motorbike displays, local crafts, food hall and farmers’ market. (

23 – 24 August - Victorian Fayre Weekend

Cannons, muskets, bugle and drums all feature as Nothe Fort steps back in time. (

23- 24 August - Charminster Festival

Live bands, food, drink, family entertainment and some very special guests. (

23-24 August - Stock Gaylard Oak Fair

This celebration of oak, timber and countryside, brings together a mixture of rural crafts, conservation projects and local food producers on the wonderful Stock Gaylard Estate, near Sherborne. More details can be found at

27 -31 August - Great Dorset Steam Fair

Steam and heritage blend beautifully at this steam driven gathering of yesteryear in pretty Tarrant Hinton (

28 – 31 August - Bournemouth Air Festival

Aircraft of all shapes and sizes take to the skies over Bournemouth from a spitfire and a vulcan to the dashing Red Arrows in this free family festival by the sea.


21 August - Melplash Show

One of the largest one day agricultural shows in Dorset and the only one held by the sea at West Bay. This event showcases local farmers, producers, growers and craftsmen in the area. The Food Hall and the By-the-Sea Marquee offers the finest award-winning food and drink in the area including great local cider. With over 300 trade stands, daring motocross displays from Bolddogs and the judging of Bridport’s Best Banger there’s plenty to entertain all the family. More at

25 August - Cattistock Countryside Show

This Bank Holiday Monday event on Rampisham Down includes the popular horse and pony classes as well as a magnificent chicken show. There will be a pedigree dog, terrier and lurcher show as well as the usual family dog show and agility. Other activities range from clay pigeon shooting and zorbing to local produce stalls and traditional arts and crafts demonstrations. More details